Written by Jenn Johnson, AIA, and Cassie Pospishil, Assoc. AIA
Here it is, the long-awaited part II recap of Design in the Hills 2023! We’ve been a bit busy (I’m sure ALL of you can relate) but made some time this morning to reminisce on the events from last month.
This is the second part in a series, so if you haven’t read the first post I would encourage you to check it out! Mitch Woldt did a wonderful article on the Security First Bank, Hermosa School, and B&T Industries tours.
The afternoon tours began at the Oyate Health Center. The Oyate Health Center is located west of the Gap, next to Camp Rapid (3200 Canyon Lake Dr, Rapid City, SD 57702, for those not familiar with the area). The facility is tribally-owned and primarily serves citizens of the tribes in the surrounding area. The health center offers a wide variety of services including urgent care, optometry, and behavioral health. Craig Grunenfelder and Cassandra West, led us on our tour through the busy facility. The design reflects local vernacular with a material palette reflecting colors native to the area. The rotunda has a luminous star nearly 30 feet in the air, with a mosaic of the star mirrored in the terrazzo at the floor level.
The next tour was Dinosaur Park – a historic landmark attraction for both tourists and local residents. Melissa Petersen and Matt Fridell led the tour with a brief introduction of the project. This included the WPA history of the site and the challenges faced while designing the new trail system to meet ADA code requirements.
Lastly, we strolled through the downtown streets of Rapid City stopping at several new projects. Projects included the Block 5 project, led by Rick Rea of Lloyd Companies; Pennington County Courthouse led by Jared Carda of CO-OP Architecture, Rapid City Fire Station 1 led by Brad Burns of Chamberlin Architects, and Property MELD led by John Kearns.
The event closed with a happy hour sponsor expo event at the new Ugly Graffiti storefront. Great food and libations were shared amongst the group. It was enlightening to hear the design and technology conversations happening throughout the event.
Thank you again to the Design in the Hills Committee and the Sponsors for this event, without which DITH would not be possible!
Photo credits: Cassie Pospishil and Jenn Johnson
The Design in the Hills committee was formed in 2011 by architects, Kris Bjerke and Tanya Davis and interior designer Maggie Job. Over the years, many new faces have trickled through the committee as leadership in the AIA South Dakota organization has evolved, however Kris has been the anchor to an event which has become a much-anticipated gathering of designers in the Black Hills each summer. The current committee includes Ms. Bjerke, architect and AIA SD board members, Jenn Johnson, Brad Burns, and interior designers Jessica Bergeleen, Kelli Trebil, and AIA South Dakota executive director, Angela Lammers.